Several new bills that directly address the issues of sexual assault affecting Virginia’s college students were recently signed by Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe. These pieces of legislation went into effect July 1st and mostly addressed reporting requirements that are targeted at protecting students and combatting sexual assault on Virginia campuses.
House Bill 1930 and Senate Bill 712 were identical bills which require university employees to report acts of sexual violence to campus Title IX coordinators. Title IX coordinators will then be required to report this information to a committee that is made up of: The Coordinator, a Student Affairs Representative and a Law Enforcement Officer.
It is mandated that the committee meet within 72 hours after receiving a report of sexual assault so it can be determined if law enforcement needs to be notified. In cases involving felony sexual assault, the committee will then meet with the Commonwealth’s attorney.
This new law will apply to sexual assaults committed against a student on campus, on public property, or a non-campus building or property.
House Bill 1785, addresses the reporting requirements for campus police and campus security departments when investigating sexual assaults. It requires campus police and security to notify the Commonwealth Attorney within 48 hours of a sexual assault investigation that involves a student.
Senate Bill 1193 was also passed. This bill requires Virginia schools to record the occurrence in the transcripts of the offender. It also requires the registrar to include a prominent notation on the academic transcript of each student who has been suspended for, has been permanently dismissed for, or withdrawn from the institution while under investigation for an offense involving sexual violence under the institution’s code, rules or set of standards governing student conduct.
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